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GRAMMY CONTENDERS
BY THE NUMBERS

Here, we break down two of the Big Four categories by their total-activity figures. There are certainly clear frontrunners and underdogs, but in the land of Grammy, that doesn’t always translate to gold. Are sales and streams enough?

Based on stats alone, Song of the Year looks like a dogfight between Billie Eilish’s “bad guy” (4.6m) and Lizzo’s “Truth Hurts” (4.4m). Taylor Swift’s “Lover” (1.2m) is actually the fifth-biggest nominee, behind Lewis Capaldi’s “Someone You Loved” (2.9m) and Lady Gaga’s “Always Remember Us This Way” (1.6m), but this is the only Top Four category to feature Swift, plus she’s the sole writer on the song—an impressive feat—and she’s known particularly for her pen-wielding skills, despite the fact she’s never won in this category. So, 2020 very well may be her year, even though she’s not the obvious choice. Gaga also has a solid shot, given that her entry comes from beloved blockbuster A Star Is Born—a film entirely driven by the power of song. Then there’s Capaldi, who seriously deserves recognition for breaking through from across the pond with his career-defining ballad. He has more leverage here since he was snubbed in Best New Artist.

As for Record, Childish Gambino’s “This Is America” nabbed the top honor this past year, defeating Drake’s “God’s Plan,” Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper’s “Shallow” and Post Malone’s “Rockstar.” In that case, cultural importance took the spotlight. This time around, there’s no question; Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” was the genre and generation-bridging giant to define the times. But could Lizzo’s “Truth Hurts” prevail with its message of female empowerment? That said, given the significance “OTR” holds for the black, LGBTQ and country communities, this thing seems pretty tough to beat on all fronts.


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